St. Mary’s County, MD – During a public meeting held on Tuesday, August 22nd, 2023, the Commissioners of St. Mary’s County convened to discuss various matters, including a significant grant application for victims’ services and recognition of a local soccer team’s achievements.

The meeting commenced with the introduction of the commissioners, followed by an invocation and the Pledge of Allegiance.

Grant Application for Victims Services

The focal point of the meeting was the Victims of Crime Act (VOCA) grant presented by Jamie Sterling, the State’s Attorney. Sterling noted that the St. Mary’s County State’s Attorney’s Office had never before received this grant and that the county has a good chance of being awarded due to the current grant’s eligibility criteria.

The VOCA grant is designed to service victims of crime, and many state’s attorney offices and other agencies throughout Maryland have utilized this funding. The grant’s timeline for St. Mary’s County would run from October 1st to June 30th, 2024, covering nine months, with a request for $355,694. An additional $86,542 will be requested from the state’s attorney’s budget to cover fringe costs, as the VOCA grant only allows 30% of the total salary for fringe in the application.

The grant would finance various positions, including more victim coordinators, a victim advocacy deputy director, and a senior legal assistant. Furthermore, the funding would also cover website design for victim notifications, mental health services, travel expenses for witnesses and victims, a canine companion service, and necessary equipment and supplies.

In response to questions from the commissioners, it was clarified that the grant could be awarded by October 2023. One commissioner inquired about the 30% fringe cost, prompting Jessica Hall, grant coordinator, to clarify that the county would have to cover the remaining 70%.

Recognition of St. Mary’s County Strikers

In a lighter note, the meeting also included a commendation for the St. Mary’s County Strikers soccer team, which achieved an excellent year, placing second in the US Youth Soccer (USYS) National Championships. The team was also recognized for multiple other accomplishments.

The coaches and players were present, and the commissioners congratulated them for their hard work, dedication, and achievements. Certificates were handed to individual players, and a group photo was taken to celebrate the occasion.

Other Discussions and Future Agendas

Additional topics covered included the consent agenda, a notable letter of support to the Leonardtown Volunteer Fire Department, and future draft agendas for upcoming meetings, which the county administrator presented.

The meeting concluded with the commissioners looking forward to future discussions and decision-making, reflecting a continued focus on improving the lives of St. Mary’s County residents.

David M. Higgins II is an award-winning journalist passionate about uncovering the truth and telling compelling stories. Born in Baltimore and raised in Southern Maryland, he has lived in several East...

Leave a comment

Leave a Reply